life tales

getting above your circumstances

8 November, 2017

The last few months have been a rather interesting time in my life. I have definitely stepped out of my comfort zone in a lot of areas, uprooted and continuously messed with any notion of routine, and thrown myself into a job completely different from anything I would have expected to do after uni (why would anyone get a job related to their degree?).  I have had some amazing opportunities, travelled to some amazing places, been able to strengthen some relationships with people who I couldn’t spend much time with last year, and made some massive decisions.

It has almost felt like I have been caught up in a whirlpool that has kept me in perpetual motion from the minute I graduated.

The problem with whirlpools is that you can sometimes get so caught up, that you stop moving yourself.  And when things start to slow down, which they inevitably do, you face the reality of having to figure out what move you will make next.

It was a few weeks after New York that I realised this had happened to me.

Yes, I loved the work I was doing, but I felt I was starting to stagnate because I was facing challenges I had never experienced. I loved reconnecting with so many dear friends, but I wasn’t able to break out of the catch-up conversations with friends that were on repeat. And even though I was fortunate enough to have support in the interim period, making decisions about where I was going to live next just all seemed a bit hard as I battled between expectations, immediate lifestyle factors, and longer-term outcomes. That’s not even mentioning how a full social and working schedule had left less time to focus on getting quite enough sleep, and doing more than just gentle exercise.

To be honest, I didn’t feel as though things were bad. In fact, under the circumstances, things were pretty good.

But it wasn’t until I heard this, that I noticed something very wrong with my attitude.

It was simple.  

“You shouldn’t be good under the circumstances. You should be getting above your circumstances.”


All of sudden, I realise what I had been doing. The whirlpool was slowing down and I was starting to sink.

And so I took a step back and started to think about where I was letting my circumstances drown me and began to swim.

It’s strange how one little comment can cause you to totally reevaluate where you are at. Things can be going seemingly well until someone points out something so obvious.

I’m still trying to move bit more in some areas. But the difference is that it’s now me determining the direction, the speed and the general flow. I’m stepping up, stepping out, and making conscious decisions about my life – rather than letting my current circumstances make the decisions for me. I’m proactively responding again. And it’s making a huge impact on my life. And my peace of mind.

xx Elizabeth 

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  • Reply Claire B. 14 November, 2017 at 10:04 am

    I am much in the same place, Liz! So here’s to being proactive instead of just letting life happen to us! xx

    • Reply Travelling Table Tales 21 January, 2018 at 2:58 pm

      It’s a great place to be in! x

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